8ID calls on sectors
to respect court processes on Acosta’s case
By EMY C. BONIFACIO, Samar News.com
April 26, 2011
CATBALOGAN CITY –
While the 8ID command acknowledges the right of everyone to express
their opinions, they did not fail to show their disappointment over
the misleading stories and twisted facts that brings about the brewing
sympathy of a few sectors over the arrest of Ericson Acosta.
Ericson Acosta, 37
years of age, is presently detained at the Calbayog sub-provincial
jail for a criminal charge on illegally possessing explosives docketed
as Criminal Case # 11-050 filed at RTC Branch 41 in Gandara,
“It is anticipated
that the legal front of the CPP and its allied organizations will
stage propaganda activities in order to deny affiliation of Acosta in
their mother organization”, the 8ID spokesperson commented.
Major General Mario
Chan, 8ID’s commander, reiterates to the public that the rights of
Acosta were respected during and after his apprehension.
“Acosta was accorded
with respect by the apprehending troops. As we’ve done so in the past,
we continue assuring our people that we will always be observant of
human rights,” the good general adds.
“In fact, his right to
counsel and defend himself in court has been duly respected, a clear
manifestation of our cognizance for a due process of law. A case has
already been filed in court, so let’s just wait for the case to take
its due course. We submitted the case to the proper courts for
resolution.” Chan clarifies.
The statements came
after reading reports that certain groups are calling for Acosta’s
immediate release from detention in a recently launched “Free Ericson
Acosta Campaign”, spearheaded by Acosta’s former colleagues from the
UP Philippine Collegian, UP Alay Sining and UP Amnesty International,
as well as his former schoolmates from St. Mary’s College, UST High
School, his family and friends. (read
Artists, journalists, academe call
for release of detained cultural worker)
The Free Ericson
Acosta Campaign has been calling on all concerned artists,
freedom-fighters and human rights advocates to unite against political
repression and attacks on human rights and civil liberties.
organizers claim that Acosta was illegally arrested last February 13
in San Jorge, Samar by members of the AFP’s 34th IB on mere suspicion
that he is a member of the New People’s Army (NPA). “Moreover, he was
in the company of a local barangay official when he was arrested and
held for three days without charges and was subjected to continuous
tactical interrogation by the military. He has been charged with
illegal possession of explosives”, Acosta’s allies insist.
The 8ID leadership
made it clear that they are not contesting Acosta’s gift of
intelligence and artistic skills as evidenced by the educational
records, his past literary works and accomplishments in his chosen
field as well as his alliances with other prominent personalities who
have been working for the country’s development.
“It was commendable of
him to have those past accomplishments, as presented by his
colleagues. We do not question that. Indeed, there are a lot of
cultural workers who are openly advocating for reforms and they are
given their freedom to exercise their expertise. However, on Acosta’s
case it seems that these groups have failed to establish the fact that
he was arrested in the hinterlands of Samar. Did anyone of his
colleagues wonder why he was in Samar, whom he was working with and
what his project was before and during the time of his arrest? It is
not even true that he was unarmed because documents/personal
belongings retrieved showed pictures of him armed with an M16 rifle.
If he’s a plain media or cultural worker, why is he armed?” explains
MGen. Chan while showing pictures of Acosta to the media.
Commanding General refuses to offer more information regarding this
case as this has already been forwarded to the court for resolution,
but was forced to shed light on queries from the local media.
Reports on the case
revealed that Ericson Acosta was arrested in the vicinity of Brgy.
Bay-ang in San Jorge, Samar while about to board on a motor boat. When
intercepted, he allegedly attempted to draw out from his pocket a hand
positively identified Ericson Acosta, alias August Lim, to be working
under the Instruction Bureau of the National Education Department of
the CPP-NPA-NDF’s Central Committee. Some other local villagers
voluntarily offered testimonies on the alleged activities of Acosta.
Furthermore, it was
learned that Acosta was sent by the CPP to facilitate the production
of various propaganda materials such as “Ang Bayan”, an underground
movement newsletter. Troops also recovered from Acosta one (1) laptop
notebook with complete accessories and spare battery, an external hard
drive, Globe tattoo (USB globe broadband), one (1) unit Nokia 3530, 6
pcs SIM cards, a cash amounting to Four Thousand Eight Hundred pesos
(P4,800.00) only and his personal belonging.
As of this writing,
www.samarnews.com published at its discussion board, Acosta’s press
statement, dated April 15, 2011. (read
It was learned that
Acosta personally drafted his own counter-affidavit and had it sent to
his defense lawyers which is being handled by a legal team from the
National Union of People’s Lawyers (NUPL), led by Atty. Jun Oliva and
Atty. Rey Cortez.
mentioned that he has completed draft of a regional human rights
situationer that focused on the cases of human rights violations in
Barangay Bay-ang in San Jorge, Samar.
“I was in Bay-ang at
the time of my arrest precisely to follow-up on these cases”, adds
“The heat inside the
cell is simply oppressive – there is no ceiling here, the lone window
is less than a square foot, and my tarima is just beside two charcoal
stoves that burn non-stop. The noise outside and the frenzied –
sometimes juvenile, sometimes zombie-like goings on among my 12
kakosas inside a stifling, cramped-up space are just too distracting,
disorienting”, was Acosta’s description of the Calbayog jail while
trying to apologize for his rambled writing.
He calls on human
rights advocates to amplify his case in order to put on pressure to
the government that would ultimately free all political prisoners. He
explained that while he is the principal subject of the Free Ercison
Acosta Campaign, he is enlisting himself to be its principal mass
leader and propagandist as well.